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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sentosa resort won't affect Malaysia tourism

The opening of the Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore's first integrated resort, will not affect tourist arrivals in Malaysia.

"We will grow and will not be cannibalised because the pie will grow. More visitors will come especially if the economy recovers.

"So, the important thing is to make it a more complete experience," Genting Group Chairman Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay told reporters after the launch of the group's 45th anniversary logo in Kuala Lumpur today.

Genting Singapore PLC, a subsidiary of Genting Bhd, will open four hotels tomorrow under the first phase of the US$4.4 billion casino-resort in Singapore.
The Festive Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel Singapore, Hotel Michael and Crockford Tower will offer a total of 1,350 rooms and 10 restaurants.

They are expected to enjoy an occupancy rate of above 80 per cent.

Meanwhile, Singapore's first legal casino and Universal Studios theme park will open to the public as soon as the group obtains licences from the Singapore government.

"It(the resorts) is ready to open and we are now waiting for the licences (casino and theme park) to be issued. As soon as it issued, we will open," Lim said.

The Singapore casino is viewed as the group's key earnings drivers in the future.

"By end of next week, Universal Studios Singapore will open and when we officially launch Resorts World Sentosa later this year, it will be another significant and historical milestone achievement for the group," Lim said.

Under the second phase of the Resorts World Sentosa, Lim said another two projects, the Equarius Hotel and Spa Villas, would be completed by mid-2011.

He said Genting's involvement in a mixed development within Iskandar Malaysia comprised theme parks, hotels and premium outlets which would serve as a gateway for local visitors to Singapore and vice-versa.

The group teamed up with New York-listed Simon Property Group to venture into upscale outlet shopping in Iskandar Malaysia under the Chelsea Premium Outlet Centres concept.

Genting Plantations Bhd's unit, Azzon Ltd, signed a joint venture agreement last year with Simon''s Chelsea Malaysia LLC to establish the centres.

Under the partnership, Genting Plantations and Simon will form a 50:50 joint-venture called Genting Chelsea Sdn Bhd to invest and operate Premium Outlet Centres in Malaysia.

The Johor Premium Outlets, will be the first project to be built in Kulai, Johor, and is set to become the iconic flagship outlet centre in the Southeast Asian retail market.

Expected to open in 2011, the centre aims to synergise with Genting's existing property operations and the group's leisure and hospitality footprint in the region.

On Genting's Resorts World, the crown jewel within the group, Lim said the group expected its customer base to increase to 20 million visitors this year from last year's 19.5 million.

Resorts World Genting, a premier integrated family leisure and entertainment resort at the peak of Genting Highlands, will offer various events throughout the year in conjunction with the group's 45th anniversary.

The events were the group's way rewarding customers with rewards and giveaways which would include special discounts on hotel rooms, food and beverages, lucky draws, theme park packages, international shows and grand sales at retails outlets.


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